Sunday, August 27, 2006


The ReCYCLEry started back in 2000 with the help of Rich Giorgi, Andrea Richards, and Seth Elliott. The idea was to encourage donations of old/used/broken bicycles and get knowledgable volunteers to fix them up and teach others, especially kids, to do the same. In exchange for putting in some hours at the ReCYCLEry, even if it was fixing up another person's bike, you could earn a bike of your own. The ReCYCLEry has since moved twice from its original location on North Greensboro Street and changed leaders several times, but it's still basically the same idea. A gang of sleepy-eyed but enthusiastic bike mechanics of varying skills, some of quite a lot of expertise, show up on weekend mornings, greet others with coffee, work on the donated bikes, and help anyone that wheels in for repairs. I have volunteered there off and on myself. I love the low-key, amorphous group and I especially like the opportunity to show off my ratchet and wrench set from Sears.

The ReCYCLEry still works the same way but now they are starting a new lending program. You pay $10 to become a member and then they set you up with a key that accesses any one of their blue bicycles at various hubs around town. I think the town of Carrboro is helping them out as well as a way to encourage green transport. Anyway, here is some video of some public sprucing up that was going on this morning as a way of publicizing the new program.

1 comment:

Rich Giorgi said...

Hi... this is Rich, the original founder of the ReCyclery in Carrboro. Good to see us written about.

A few comments: Andrea's last name is actually Rosenberg. There was a key 4th member involved named Todd Hindmarsh and we got excellent community support from far too many people to mention. Our first volunteers were all older responsible women, breaking the stereotype that bike-geeks in Carrboro are young, anarchistic hip-folk. Unfortunately, the "un-hip" element has all but been eliminated from the current ReCyclery, but hopefully they will go back to the roots, work with children more, involve the whole community and dedicate themselves to teaching people skills that seemed out of reach.

The ReCyclery was inclusionary. The current incarnation is a touch too exclusionary for my tastes. Still, I'm proud of all the good the ReCyclery has done and hope it will find it's way back to doing more, for everyone.

Thanks for posting about us. It was quite a nice flashback.